Composition isn’t Everything

Many years ago when my husband and I lived on the Queen Charlotte Islands, my parents came from Vancouver Island to visit us. We took them to the beach one day, and  my mother and I decided to take pictures of each other for posterity. Because it was one of those rare times when it wasn’t raining and the sand was relatively dry, she sat on the sand and pointed her Brownie camera at me and I lay on a log, posing as I prepared to take a picture of her. We laughed when we realized that with the cameras in front of our faces we wouldn’t get much of a picture so we had to take turns. In the photo you see I’ve lowered my camera while she took my picture, and then it was my turn to take hers. We had the giggles and I think that’s why she couldn’t hold the camera steady and ended up taking a picture of her own boots.

Later she sent me the photo and I laughed all over again. Not the greatest composition, but it was unique.

My mother died thirty years ago, and this bad photo of her gumboots is one of my special treasures because of the happy memories it evokes.

Posing with our gumboots

38 thoughts on “Composition isn’t Everything

  1. Now I think that photo tells a good story… and as you say composition isn’t everything… but then who wrote the rules on composition.?? I have a strong feeling that so many photos are looked at and people start to critique on composition lighting and all the other things that go with the nuances of photography… yet so many I take I do so for the memory it evokes, and that is to me far more important… even I got a smile before I read your post… you see I go quickly to the photos when I open a blog and look at them first before reading the post… and without knowing what the photo was all about it gave me a smile and I had to read now to know the story behind the photo… and I loved it… and no one is in the position to critique a photo of love and memories… I think it’s great…

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    • You’ve got it exactly right! I think that’s why people are so upset when they lose photos in fires or floods. They’re impossible to replace. No matter the quality, they are links that help keep our fading memories alive.

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    • It was fun to have my parents visit and to show them around the beautiful Queen Charlottes. When I posted this, I had a bit of a tear in my eye even though I was remembering how we laughed. Thanks for visiting, Kristin.

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  2. This picture brings you back to this special day and you can remember your dear mother in such a nice way. Thanks for sharing the story behind “them” gum boots.

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    • It was Suzanne Rogers’ blog that reminded me of the photo. She had a photo of Bob the horse nuzzling her boot. Last night I dug through the box of photos to find this old thing that I knew was in there somewhere. It’s ugly but the memories are beautiful.

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  3. Always enjoying your beautiful site, and now I am letting you know that I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Details of this award can be viewed on my site. Thanks for all the inspiration.

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  4. What a lovely picture. I just came back from visiting my Mom and was reminded of your words – “You are so lucky to have your Mom to talk to, even if she is almost blind and deaf. Mine has been gone for 30 years”. Yes, I am fortunate and I was reminded of your words when I spent so much time with my Mom in the past week. Many times I didn’t know what to talk about because her world is so small. But I played cards with her, helped her put pre-school puzzles together and reminisced for hours. I will always cherish this memory.

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  5. That’s wonderful, Gladys. I’m glad you were able to spend time with your mom. I know what you mean about having to work at conversation, but when there’s a good connection you don’t always need words.

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  6. Ah, this is wonderful! You look so happy there, and what a great story to go along with it! As for the quality, well, you and your mom achieved exactly what everyone using instagram today is working so hard to perfect! 🙂

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